LINCOS had components that worked in an interdisciplinary way to achieve and promote Sustainable Human Development in the communities. In contrast, the community identity and the proper self-esteem of the inhabitants were sought. The components are cited below.
Technology. The objective of the Technological Component was to break the existing technological gap between the inhabitants of communities in developed countries and the inhabitants of marginal towns in developing countries. This component sought to solve with technical applications some of the problems and needs experienced by the people of the LINCOS communities, supporting the rest of the project components for this purpose.
Business and Community. Support communities in the search for models based on coherent business strategy but adapted to the needs and circumstances of their environment.
Design and construction. The challenge of this component was to design and develop new applications that allowed people with little or no experience, to assimilate and position these technological tools to their daily lives.
Education. The pedagogical methodology of LINCOS based on the Constructionist model, a line of thought that tries to explain how the human being learns. One of its greatest exponents is the Swiss zoologist Jean Piaget who proposed that people learn when they build knowledge. For this construction, they use information that they took from the environment and combine it with data that they previously possessed, through processes that he called assimilation, accommodation, and adaptation.
Environment. The objective was to promote healthy environments and communities through collaboration in the search for harmony with the environment in which the people develop. In addition, the component sought to help the community to acquire greater awareness and knowledge of the situation, promoting its development from its environment, through the use and support of all the technological resources present in the unit.
LINCOS promoted in the communities, the intelligent use of technological tools to solve problems and everyday situations in the scenario where the people of the areas act—developed a technical platform with state-of-the-art equipment and access to information by the entire community. Learning together promotes meaningful, lasting, and permanent learning, which gives people positive attitudes to adverse situations when being prepared and with a more open mind to society's changes.
All the members of the communities (children, older people, adolescents, workers, students, and educators) were able to find in LINCOS a suitable learning environment, where they could find support in what they needed. Starting for open businesses up to be trained in specific subjects, communication services (fax, telephone, Internet). It also encourages:
1. Use of technological tools for the construction of learning: through pedagogical strategies, LINCOS promoted the construction of knowledge in communities (urban, rural, educational), based on their talents understood as those entrepreneurs who have said community to do in the face of the successful and innovative resolution of problems using the technological tools intelligently. Innovative and creative processes were guaranteed in learning environments that encouraged the socialization of meaningful learning, their feedback and enjoyment for the sake of learning - doing.
2. Technological update to innovate in Educational Environments, LINCOS intended to give a new air to education, not replacing traditional school, but being a support of it. Creatively, entrepreneurs identified within the systems of Teaching-learning that have the desire to innovate in the way of delivering information and, therefore, knowledge to the people in charge, awakening interest, pleasing them.
3. Creation of small businesses, support for established businesses, training sources for entrepreneurs who wanted to use creativity and innovation in their production processes.
4. 4. Besides, awareness and responsibility regarding the intelligent use of environmental resources and sustainable human development, based on constructionist methodologies supported by the use of information and communication technologies, were encouraged.
The LINCOS project underwent profound transformations since its inception. Initially, their efforts concentrated in the search for opportunities to increase access to information and communication technologies in rural communities.
However, this initial objective soon reached the top since the communities, although they required such technologies, also needed other elements that together sought to potentiate their development.
The issue of drinking water, the environment, as well as preventable diseases took a long term within the program, and then the project concentrated its efforts on the transfer of skills in the use and use of technological tools in many fields.
The project initially took as a base of operations “recycled” centers or platforms; after much effort by the design teams to integrate all this set of technologies focused on solving some of these problems, with which the communities They counted.
But along the same path, new needs and new challenges arose, which forced them to launch, the new generation of LINCOS focused on the creation of community centers for sustainable human development that specifically were able to adapt to the particular conditions of each site. Seeking the development of harmoniously with the environment, thus managing not to introduce technology aggressively but rather to ensure the community itself incorporates technology gradually.
Also presented below, the new conception of LINCOS known as LINCOS Second Generation, which sought sustainable development, innovation, creativity, and cultural identity, using technology as the tool to achieve it.
Each community is free to locate that service package into a community center, in a warehouse, or in a school classroom. The idea was not to push the change, but the individuals through their own experiences and their needs managed to use those services so that they could become genuine agents that satisfy the difference in each site.
For 2008 we worked on the new conception of LINCOS, understood as LINCOS the Third Generation, which had some innovative and creative components for community benefit, the projection and the weaving of social networks were a priority in this new concept.
The LINCOS Program began in 2003, a new phase from a change in the perception of the services and applications offered to the communities with which they participated.
This change in attitude based on almost four years of previous work and pioneering experience developed both in the projects established in Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic.
It is from all the accumulated experience that this year began with a new stage, which was called the establishment of the LINCOS Project: THE SECOND GENERATION.
LINCOS SECIND GENERATION consisted of putting into operation a model and a much more elaborate and structured plan of technologies and services for the new communities, but which contributed to generating capacities and training new entrepreneurs. The concept above Sustainably sought the Development of Communities.
Methodologically, the LINCOS group grew professionally and had greater maturity and experience, the result of interactive work with the staff of the LINCOS community centers, as well as the feedback we had from the communities and our partners.
It was possible to conceptualize a new unit design, which adjusted in a more appropriate way to the real needs of communities in developing countries.
Important goals and results, which allowed us to expand the LINCOS concept to a population of beneficiaries much larger than we could cover.
The number of beneficiaries doubled, from the current 100,000 people annually to more than 350,000 by 2008.
The project managed to position itself as an extremely efficient solution for the development of communities, both for the quality of its designs and the methodology used. The prestige of the project caused that more than 5000 articles appeared on the Internet about the theme LINCOS. Also, we received prestigious national and international awards; the project had more than 20 units installed operating both in Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic in the short term the project sought to expand its scope to Mexico and Central America.
The impact obtained at the community level was so significant that the “constructivist” type evaluations that were carried out by several organizations of recognized trajectory demonstrated the effect of the project in the generation of initiatives in the communities and the training of agents of change, more than in the production of traditional numerical statistics. A summary of these specific impacts of LINCOS units are the following:
Development of creative skills in young people thanks to the management of technological tools.
A better performance from children in their educational activities.
Greater motivation for children to study.
Possibilities to improve family integration through new activities.
Generation of new expectations in the residents of the community.
New opportunities in the family economy by encouraging imaginative alternatives to electronic commerce.
Greater knowledge of what happens in the rest of the country and the world thanks to the connectivity offered by the program.
Promotion of initiative capacity in all segments of the population with access to the project.
Improvement of self-esteem levels in the population, especially in young people.
Generation of new positive values in community life.
Greater appreciation of the advantages of a comprehensive community development based on access to new information technologies.